With the birth of the digital age, one thing that seems to be going the way of the dodo bird is independent bookshops. People are increasingly downloading books digitally on iPads or Kobo eReaders. There will always be demand for hard- or soft-copy books, but in the case of the World’s Biggest Bookstore, the demand for available land in the downtown core may be higher.
In a recent report in the Toronto Star, the owners of 20 Edward St., which is home to the store, are considering selling the 64,000-sq.-ft. shop after current lessee and business owner Indigo Books & Music asked for a significant rent reduction due to a downturn in its business. After receiving a $38 million bid from an undisclosed Toronto developer, it’s not hard to understand why the owners would consider selling.
Despite the offer, the owners are still hoping to find a net tenant for the site, which sits in what may be one of the most high-profile sites left in the city. As much as we would hate to see the World’s Biggest Bookstore leave, imagine the possibilities for 20 Edward St. The area already has a significant number of towers either under construction or in the planning stage, but this could be the site of our biggest landmark condominium towers in the city.
Of course, we are simply speculating at this point. The owners of 20 Edward St. are hoping to rent out the property and avoid selling. However, there’s no reason we can’t have a little fun, right? Perhaps this could be the site a landmark tower? Bring in the best and brightest in architects and let them battle it out for the right to design this tower? Imagine if we could bring a Daniel Libeskind tower to Toronto? The possibilities for this site are endless.
Enough of our dreaming, but keep an eye on 20 Edward St., as it could be one of the most highly sought-after parcels of land in the city.